Lately, a little bit of tension has developed between the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and myself. It has been a long time coming and I am afraid it has arrived.
After decades of being married, and I am not quite sure which decades, it has all come down to this one thing. Vegetables.
At my age, I think I should be over all this nonsense of what my wife calls “eating healthy.” Who says eating vegetables is healthy?
Well, my wife says it. It must be true or she would not say it. I am not quite sure how to deal with this rather delicate situation. After all, she is the one that prepares meals and I am the one that devours the meals.
She believes that because she prepares the meals, she should be the one to decide what those meals should be made up of.
Me, on the other hand, and I am not sure it is the right hand or the left, believe that because I devour those meals I should have something to say in what those meals really are.
Up until recently, I have not made a big issue of this, but I think the time has come for me to put my foot down. Vegetables and I are parting ways.
It is not that I do not like any vegetables. There are a few I enjoy munching on, like corn, lima beans and carrot cake.
That last one gets me in trouble every time. I insist that carrots are a vegetable of which my wife cannot argue. It is the cake part that she says disqualifies it for being a vegetable. I say since the word “carrot” comes before “cake” it defines what it really is. A carrot is a vegetable.
You can appreciate, I’m sure, the dilemma I am in.
“At your delicate age,” she says rather sarcastically, “you should be eating healthy.”
My rebuttal is simply that all my life I have been eating healthy now I should be entering the stage when I can eat what I want to eat and what makes me happy rather it is healthy or not.
Of course, my idea of healthy does not correlate with her idea of healthy. I understand that, but I also understand it is my health.
Last month I went to the doctor for my annual visit. As usual, he found nothing wrong with me and in a little bit of desperation he said, “Someone your age should have something wrong with them.” With all of his doctoring expertise, he could not find anything wrong with me, which means I must be healthy.
Therefore, I say, somebody my age with nothing wrong with them should be able to eat exactly what he or she wants to eat.
I remember all my life whenever going out to eat; I always made sure I ordered a salad to go along with my meal. It was not because I really liked salads, but it was supposed to be healthy for you. I honestly believe I have eaten enough salads in my lifetime to last the rest of my life.
Then the argument comes from the other side of the house. “The reason the doctor doesn’t find anything wrong with you,” she says rather sternly, “is because you’ve been eating healthy vegetables all your life.”
I suppose there is some kudos in that argument.
“Don’t you remember,” she said, “that Eve used an apple to cause Adam to fall into sin?”
Well, I had to think about that one. There is no concrete evidence that it was an apple tree, but I was not in any position to challenge her theology at that moment.
Recently we have come to somewhat of a stalemate on this. She accepts the fact that I will not eat broccoli at all or any green leafy stuff on a regular basis. I think it is good for me just to go step-by-step in this regard.
A recent news story reported of people getting sick after eating some leafy vegetables at some restaurant buffet, and I remind her of this every chance I get. “I just,” I try to explain to her, “want to be careful about what I eat so I don’t get sick.”
That argument always brings on one of her glaring looks in my direction. Then she will sigh rather deeply and say in that sweet little voice of hers, “I want you to be healthy so that you’re around as long as possible.”
After she says that, I have lost the argument. Of course, I want to be around as long as possible. And so, I promised her that every month I would eat one helping of a healthy vegetable but a vegetable of my choosing.
She smiles, knowing that she’s got me. The thing about this “got me” moment is there is nothing I can do about it. All arguments aside, she got me.
I am sure the Bible has a lot to say about eating healthy. One verse that comes to my mind along this line is, “Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).
If my body is the temple of God, as the Bible declares, I need to treat it with respect and whatever I do, I need to do it to the glory of God.
Dr. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family of God Fellowship, 1471 Pine Road, Ocala, FL 34472. He lives with his wife in Silver Springs Shores.